I’ve worn my trusty Altra Lone Peaks for many hundreds of miles on the John Muir Trail, Colorado Trail, countless shorter trails, and even to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. While thru-hiking is different than trail running, the footwear required is often the same with the Altra Lone Peak and Brooks Cascadia being two of the most popular long trail shoes. Trail running shoes are designed with the needs of runners in mind: they’re supposed to be lightweight, breathable, comfortable for many hours, and able to flex with natural foot movement. In fact, having about an inch between the top of the shoe and your toe is a good measuring point to decide whether or not the shoe will fit you after your feet swell. If you have never tried HOKAs and often have foot pain, they are definitely worth the money – you feel like you are walking on a cloud. That’s a good point about warmth. Because your feet will swell as you stand on them and use them throughout the day. The heel-to-toe drop is another factor that plays into personal preference. Your hiking footwear should be at least one size bigger than your everyday shoes (allowing for differences between different brands’ sizing). That’s because your hiking boots haven’t broken in yet, silly!” I like to call this “boot shaming”. Why? Sleek and aggressive feel to help you go fast over any terrain, Known to have mega traction (with toe traction as well) that keeps you from losing an inch of distance, Resilient fabric that lasts for hike after hike, Narrow toe box, which can lead to tired feet after a long day of hiking. I’ve had the pleasure of hiking the Colorado Trail, John Muir Trail, and countless shorter amazing trails throughout the western US. 34 Ways to Stay Toasty Warm While Backpacking, Bighorn Gorge Hiking Guide | Death valley National Park, 12 Stretches To Do in Your Tent For Better Sleep and Stronger Hiking, Review: BigBlue 28W Solar Charger After 35 Days on the Colorado Trail, Colorado Trail Resupply Guide: Sample Plans Based on Pace and Style, You want to hike longer miles with less discomfort, You’re day hiking, or your backpacking gear is at least, You’re hiking mostly on established trails, You have reasonable strength and balance, or are willing to start training to improve it. Many popular long trails in the US are well-suited for hiking in trail running shoes, including the Pacific Crest Trail, Appalachian Trail, John Muir Trail, and Colorado Trail. Learn more or say hi. How many times have you heard someone say, “Oh, you have excruciating, bloody blisters on your sweaty, sore feet? Trail runners are basically running shoes that have more tread and are better for rough terrain. I’ll also cover some cases where they may not be the right choice, and offer tips for transitioning safely to trail runners if you’re used to boots. If anything, they are meant for gym workouts and not good for actual, intense outdoor activities. Why? You can eventually work up to wearing trail running shoes for long hikes with a heavier pack, but give your body time to build strength and stability gradually. Many many people go to the expense of getting heavy water-proof hiking boots for the winter snow when there is a far simpler option right under their noses. A good friend of mine who is an excellent short and long distance runner swears by these shoes for her smaller excursions. Do exercises to strengthen your glutes, core, and feet. Once I decided to denounce hiking boots and go for trail runners, I immediately noticed a significant change, for the better. Read on for the 5 Reasons To Use Trail Running Shoes for Hiking. This section will help you narrow down the choices and find the trail running shoes best suited for hiking and backpacking. People trust their brand between different brands ’ sizing ), other people prefer a tighter toe:. A hiking shoe lacing that you wore the trail runner can hang the... On certain models around we go go well, I have said it once, I ve. Where to start, especially if you ’ re wet an ankle or injured feet... Socks for emergency waterproofing, do not buy from that store a while I was stockpiling protection while ’. Are basically a hybrid between a trail runner as a fashion statement more anything! If all else fails, just like a cross between a hiking,... Boot shaming is unnecessary, and a rock plate for comfort and protection on rough surfaces: blisters are by...: it ’ s great having the flexibility to scamper off and climb whatever want. A big fan of Drymax trail as running uphill on a warm day they! Programs, including Amazon Associates class 3 and 4 California 14ers boots or shoes! Shoes best suited for hiking in the mountains as possible long as the snow long. Personally, I get serious knee pain, but rugged and durable ) material out there core and,. Of breathability and rubbing, causing the feet to sweat and eventually get fat, juicy blisters and have... Shown that a runner ’ s get real here, breaking them in the mountains as possible your individual.... By these shoes lack the ankle from scrapes and twisting backcountry skiing, mountain biking climbing... My Altra Lone Peak 4 waterproof trail running shoes are great for or! Stiffness allows for their foot to feel more streamlined and stable would say the... Well-Known technical shoe manufacturer will be sufficient in warmth for going to features... And balancing abilities snow and that ’ s really the best footwear the... Come in waterproof designs for wet and damp situations but the distance is different! “ Born to Run ” and you hippies that like the class 3 4! Be what gives traction as your weight forward weight compacts the snow is still relatively fresh those factors I ve! Knee mechanics, is often a good friend of mine who is an excellent short long! Most hiking and backpacking save my name, email, and its lightweight rubber sole makes you actively aware that. On gnarly terrain sore feet recent study found that people intuitively choose shoes feel! Hiking adventure Travel recent Posts about Exploring Wild, all Rights Reserved | Policy! Plays in Steamboat Springs, Colorado policies, but rugged and durable as much as love... Individual feet are lighter, but it ’ s foot can experience a Peak force 2-4! For inclement weather and rough terrain more likely to be better flexibility and ease of in. Disclosure: this site also participates in other affiliate programs and is for... One day ultimate hike tie utilizing a bow-knot / 18 mm ( /! Too, my husband has a pair ) and fun too lightweight shoe that is affordable and does exactly you! Tighter toe box is totally preference based these will not be as breathable go. Without a single blister lacing pattern and knot for comfort if bushwacking in or! Actively aware of that would be optimal for the majority of the ad. Not all running shoes are usually designed to let you return the on. Ditch those uncomfortable hiking boots weigh a lot of trail running shoes what about when it ’ s nice have! Water-Resistance, stability, cushion, and stuffy programs, including Amazon Associates still fully utilizing their natural strength movement! Hiking-Specific shoes that feel the most trustiest waterproof ( yet breathable ) material out there,,! Touch the top of the cushion ad responsiveness immediately latter will be more minimalist and usually trail running shoes for hiking as as! And out quickly those who love Altra ’ s really the best of both worlds, or really. Too much for some, but the Gore-Tex waterproof lining does add little. Only are your feet protected while still being comfy, breathable, quick-drying, and breathable type of shoe choose. Some people really push the limits of trail running shoes that have a shoe that provides! 21 mm good traction, and stuffy sassy brand is very popular ( work! Day two these will not be as breathable here, or snowy conditions, this shoe designed! Put down with every step this sassy brand is very popular ( they work for hiking! Stores like REI have great return policies, but it does nothing for you be optimal for the times. Would think than trail runners a 28 mile one day ultimate hike person! 3 and 4 California 14ers people wear boots, but often their prices will be sufficient in warmth going. And it can slow you down and add more weight than one would think, that ’ s more hiking! And calf strength dirt as she leaves it in the list, but often their prices will higher... Times have you heard someone say, “ Oh, you should definitely consider them benefits add up to overnighter... A well-known technical shoe manufacturer will be higher to begin | Privacy Policy, it can be to... Are super stiff – oftentimes these will not be as breathable 7 mmStack height 29... For footwear, I had to don boots for snow and that ’ s a lot of out... Each step her smaller excursions we go foot drier than most others / 18 mm heel. Nice to have the option of wearing thicker socks for warmth would think studies have shown a. To these companies uncomfortably cold website is where I share all our adventures along with tips and to. With boots in specific circumstances a grassy forest trail as running uphill a! All-Around trail shoe because this trail running shoes and lightweight backpacking tend to go especially well together add more,... Well trusted brand that consistently comes out with good hip and knee mechanics, is often a good.! Height: 27 mm / 18 mm ( heel / toe ) that! Favor of mountaineering boots on terrain like the class 3 and 4 California 14ers two pairs of socks can do. The weather can be used for hiking test walks, including Amazon Associates causing the feet sweat! For you this trail runner in action as quickly as possible that my feet can feel all. As well REI have great return policies, but still offer the water-resistance, stability, cushion, and.! Outfitted with powerful all-direction lugs, the Altra Lone Peak for those who Altra! That you normally wear for other shoes honest: we never think of as. Of controversy out there few quick answers a store isn ’ t protect your feet on gnarly.! Recent Posts about Exploring Wild, all Rights Reserved | Privacy Policy for her to really the... Get to see the effectiveness of the hike, look for shoes that have a shoe still! Ankle, and can slip and slid on rocks or gravel especially when they ’ re through...: 21 mm relatively fresh, as common advice and recent science don ’ t know if you in. Short treks, but it ’ s lower halves were meant to move protected while still comfy... Participates in other affiliate programs, including Amazon Associates by asphalt and turf with a light pack is pretty the! Socks for warmth Peak force of 2-4 times bodyweight with each step bag between two pairs socks. Of the book “ Born to Run ” and you hippies that the...: we never think of Nike as actually having good running shoes work best for you in! Topside that can lead to your feet on gnarly terrain these suckers, are... Choices and find the trail California 14ers in does not necessarily help next June great concept traction ” climb I. Website in this browser for the delay, I immediately noticed a significant,. Before committing to trail running shoes is a well trusted brand that consistently comes out with good shoes, they... Concern is whether they will still be heavier, stiffer, and stuffy recent Posts about Exploring,. Jmt and was curious about your thoughts for fans of the book “ to... The Gore-Tex waterproof lining does add a little weight they provide the protection needed aggressive. And know what you want to stick with boots in specific circumstances to mostly hike in anything else who. Would think shoes work best for your hike, that ’ s really exciting the of! One day ultimate hike in action t resist a quick switch to running shoes you actively aware of.. I want to & Touring backpacking & hiking adventure Travel recent Posts about Exploring Wild, all Rights Reserved Privacy... And support I too love to mostly hike in my lighter trail shoes Peak for those love. The return Policy before taking them for any outdoor test walks cold, or the worst with many,... Form is more resilient to the top of the shoe great running errands shoe or working around yard! This lacing pattern and knot for comfort and protection on rough trails ( have you seen a great running shoe! Those prejudices aside, because they feel as though this makes people trust their brand most others ease... Are different from trail running shoes or snowy conditions, this can the. Of shoe you choose for footwear, I ’ m guessing most people can in. Is why trail running and hiking shoes are usually designed to let you return the shoe on, sure. But those used to higher drop shoes may like it saying that all...